When you think of the Audi A5, you probably conjure up images in your head of boring office building parking lots, self-serious men in suits and being tailgated on the Interstate. We think we’ve come across an Audi A5 that readers of this site will actually be quite interested in, however, and it comes from Japan of all places.
The mad creation you’re looking at was built by Japanese drift team Helios Racing in cooperation with performance parts company Kinokuni Enterprise. Why should it be of any interest to GM fans, you ask? Because hiding beneath that DTM-style bodywork is a 7.4-liter General Motors 454 LSx iron block V8 engine with forged internals and a Moroso four-stage dry sump system. The motor makes an incredible 786 horsepower and 643 pound-feet of torque and is paired with an Albins six-speed sequential racing transmission, which sends power to the rear wheels through a Winters quick-change rear end.
Helios Racing and Kinokuni Enterprise will field their self-built A5 drift car in the 2019 Japanese Formula Drift series this year, with Kazuya Ilzuka at the wheel. Speedhunters recently caught up with the team for the car’s first official shakedown test with the Audi A5 at Fuji, documenting the entirety of the vehicle in a characteristically stunning photoset. According to that article, Helios has plans to slap a pair of turbochargers on the 454 LSx engine before the drift season starts, which should boost its output to around 1,600 horsepower.
The team also posted a video of a brief shakedown run with the Audi A5 to their YouTube channel earlier this year, showing Ilzuka getting familiar with his new equipment on a skidpad. We hear the car’s sophisticated Bilstein dampers and other aspects of its race-spec suspension are still being set up, so the body roll and chassis movement seen in the video will eventually be tuned out.
Don’t miss this mad Formula Drift build in action in the video embedded above.